Entrepreneur and navy wife Cynthia Cummings stands outside the Department of National Defense property on Rosebank Road in Colwood

Business to offer bus service between Colwood and CFB Esquimalt

A Colwood entrepreneur is launching a private bus service to pick up where the cancellation of the military Blue Boat has left off.

A Colwood entrepreneur is launching a private bus service to pick up where the impending cancellation of the military Blue Boat has left off.

The “Blue Bus” shuttle service will transport people between the Colwood location of the Military Family Resource Centre on Rosebank Road, and the CFB Esquimalt front gates starting May 1.

Buses are scheduled to leave near the military resource centre Monday to Friday for three morning runs before 7 a.m. Return trips will leave from near CFB Esquimalt at 4:15 and 4:45 p.m.

Blue Bus developer Cynthia Cummings has a husband and son in the navy who use the Blue Boat daily.

With the upcoming cancellation of the service at the end of April, she said it only seemed logical that somebody provide an alternative.

“I’m doing this because we are a military family,” said Cummings, who lives in Belmont Park. “I’m doing it for the military, just to ensure that our military community can continually, comfortably go to work.”

Cummings said she thinks of herself as a logistical coordinator putting together a needed service. She isn’t expecting to make a profit and is trying to keep the fare price as low as possible.

Ultimately, demand will drive service levels, and if it turns out that there is no demand, Cummings said her investment is minimal enough that she can shut the business down without much of a loss.

“If I last a month, or six months, I can stop at any time,” said Cummings. “I just figured let’s just do it. Let’s see what happens.”

She is selling the Blue Bus service as convenient, reliable, specific to the needs of the military personnel and a solution to get more cars off the “Colwood crawl.”

The project has fallen together quickly for Cummings, who is working with Wilson’s Transportation in Victoria to organize buses and drivers. She has already heard plenty of interest from military families and expects the service to be well used.

“I think it’s a great idea,” said her husband, Warrant Officer Wayne Cummings.

“I think the military is very keen on something like this or anything, because they don’t have a viable option, they don’t have a solution. This alleviates that issue.”

Cynthia Cummings said the Blue Bus service — blue in name only, unlike the outgoing Blue Boats — will have the capacity to transport about 320 people in the morning. Between 300 and 500 people use the Blue Boat daily.

With two buses per run, and three runs each weekday morning, and two back in the afternoon, Cummings said her company can fill the gap.

Parking for the service will be available for military personnel just inside the gates of the Department of National Defense property at the end of Rosebank Road.

CFB Esquimalt spokesperson Lt. Michael McWhinnie confirmed military members can use that parking for the Blue Bus. The area is being offered to for personnel who are carpooling and the bus service initiative fits that mandate.

“While CFB Esquimalt is discussing a number of transportation options with other parties, we are pleased to see a private initiative taken that may help to relieve the traffic congestion in the local area,” McWhinnie said.

Alternative parking will be available in the lower parking bowl of the West Shore Parks and Recreation property, near Bear Mountain arena.

The Blue Bus will swing up through that parking lot to pick up commuters. After that the buses will go directly to CFB Esquimalt, with no other stops.

“I think word will travel very quickly, which is great. That’s what we need,” Cummings said. “I think (the Blue Bus) just gives you a good option.”

A business licence from the City of Colwood is in the works and all transportation licensing comes through Wilson’s Transportation.

The Department of National Defense is not involved but has been informed of the intent of the business. The service will be available to all military personnel, families, civilian workers or any members of the public.

Riders will be able to purchase either a monthly pass at $60, a biweekly pass at $35 or a weekly pass at $20, plus HST.

For more information visit www.bluebusshuttle.com.





Just Posted

Mount Douglas Mathletes enjoying success by the numbers

Saanich Grade 9s walk away with top five spots in Island math competition

Songhees Wellness Centre event immersed in indigenous cuisine and culture

Camosun and Songhees cook together for reconciliation while fundraising for student scholarship fund at March 23 event

Victoria Women’s Expo showcases the latest trends

Over 100 vendors feature lots of beauty, health, food, jewelry products and more

Hillside Avenue death ruled a homicide, police say

No charges have yet been laid in the killing of Victoria man Joe Gauthier

Hope gets eight year sentence for Church Avenue sex assault

Eight years is the sentence for David Robert Hope, who was found… Continue reading

VIDEO: B.C. Mounties reunite veteran with lost military medals

RCMP say Zora Singh Tatla, who served in the army in India for 28 years, is the righful owner

Over 80s leading Victoria’s fitness charge

Go at your own pace, advises 87 year old gym buff

Federal government seeks public feedback on pedestrian safety

What safety measures do you think need to improved for pedestrians and cyclists?

Experts urging caution as rabbits die by the hundreds in B.C. city

Province of B.C. confirms more positive tests for rabbit haemorrhagic disease

Canucks snap scoreless streak but fall short in 5-3 loss to Sharks

Swiss forward Timo Meier nets two, including the game-winner, to lead San Jose

Lilia Zaharieva wants to share her medical good fortune

UVic student wants treatment for cystic fibrosis made available for all

Saanich Talks event kicks off Local Area Plan updates

Updates on plans for Cadboro Bay and Cordova Bay the focus of Wednesday meeting at UVic

Braves trim Bucs to fend off elimination

Game 7 of VIJHL playoff series goes Sunday night in Nanaimo

4 facts to ring in St. Patrick’s Day

What do you really know about the Irish celebration?

Most Read